Is No. 10 Alabama out of the College Football Playoff hunt? Sure appears that way and definitely will be with a loss at No. 11 Ole Miss on Saturday in SEC action.
Which way to lean at the best sportsbooks?
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Ole Miss Rebels
Saturday, November 12, 2022 – 03:30 PM EST at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium
CBS has this SEC West matchup. LSU leads the division at 5-1, while Ole Miss is 4-1 and Alabama 4-2. LSU wins a head-to-head tiebreaker with both those schools, so the Tigers are obviously in the driver’s seat.
Last season, the Tide pretty easily handled the Rebels 42-21 in Tuscaloosa. Brian Robinson, now with the Washington Commanders, rushed for 171 yards and 4 scores. Bryce Young threw for 241 yards and 2 scores. Ole Miss entered with the nation’s top offense but was held to 291 yards. Matt Corral, then a top Heisman candidate, threw for 213 yards and a TD. He’s now with the Carolina Panthers.
Alabama leads the all-time series 57-10-2, including 10-3 in Oxford, and has won the past 6. Alabama coach Nick Saban is 17-3 all-time and 13-2 at Alabama for his career against the Rebels. Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin is 0-3 against the Tide in his head coaching career, with one loss coming at Tennessee and the other 2 at Ole Miss.
The Rebels are 7-3 against the spread on the NCAAF picks in the past 10 meetings at home.
Title Hopes Gone For Alabama
Saturday will be Alabama's 164th game since the start of the 2011 season. It will be the first time the Tide is playing a regular season game without having a chance to win the national title. Since 2011, Alabama has taken the field without a chance to win the national title only twice, in 2013 and 2019 in bowl games.
It would take a miracle for them to reach the College Football Playoff after losing 32-31 in overtime at No. 10 LSU this past Saturday. Tigers QB Jayden Daniels ran for a 25-yard touchdown in overtime and then found Mason Taylor for a do-or-die 2-point conversion as Brian Kelly went for the win.
It was Bama’s 2nd loss this season, with both defeats coming on the game's final play (field goal at Tennessee).
Last Week's Defeat
The LSU game included 6 second-half lead changes and a tying field goal by Alabama in the final 30 seconds. The Tide began overtime with the ball and took a 31-24 lead on Roydell Williams's second touchdown of the game. The last time UA dropped an overtime game occurred 11 years ago to the day when the Tide fell 9-6 in a home decision to LSU on Nov. 5, 2011.
Nick Saban fell to 4-3 in overtime contests as the Alabama head coach.
"Look, I can't blame the players," Saban said. "I'm responsible for all this stuff. So if we didn't do it right, that's on me."
What About the Rankings?
For the first time in the College Football Playoff era, Alabama and Clemson lost on the same day, and both tumbled in the rankings. The Tide dropped to No. 10 in the AP Poll.
The Crimson Tide has a streak of 120 straight polls ranked no worse than No. 10. That is the second-longest such streak in the history of the AP poll, behind Miami (1985-93). The new College Football Playoff rankings will be released Tuesday night, and they should drop to a similar spot.
One issue this year has been shaky pass protection. QB Bryce Young, the 2021 Heisman winner, has had to run for his life. He has been contacted on 22% of his dropbacks this season and was pressured on 44% of his pass attempts against LSU. Bama also has been penalized a whopping 78 times, tied for most in the FBS.
In order to reach the SEC championship game, Alabama would have to beat Ole Miss and Auburn, and hope for an LSU collapse with losses at unranked Arkansas and Texas A&M. The Tide are now +1500 to win the SEC and +4000 for the national title. Save your money!
Ole Miss Riding Judkins
Of course, the Ole Miss head coach, Lane Kiffin, is a former offensive coordinator at Alabama. Tide coach Nick Saban is 27-2 all-time against his former staffers during his tenure at Bama. Both losses did come last year (Jimbo Fisher and Kirby Smart). Kiffin is considered a leading candidate for the Auburn job.
The Rebs come off their bye week, they last played on Oct. 29 and escaped 31-28 at Texas A&M. Kiffin’s run-heavy squad totaled 530 yards, including 390 on the ground against a pretty good defense. It was the most rushing yards allowed by A&M since 2003.
Quinshon Judkins has been one of the top freshmen in the country and had a career-high 205 rushing yards along with a TD as he became the program's all-time freshman rushing leader with 1,036 yards on the year. His 34 carries were the most by a Rebel since Deuce McAllister ran 36 times against Mississippi State in 1999.
Judkins now ranks 5th in program history, in both rushing yards and rushing touchdowns (13) in a single season, becoming just the 9th Rebel to ever pass the 1,000-yard rushing mark in a season. Judkins has run for at least 1 touchdown in 7 consecutive games.
Rebels' Recent Numbers
Ole Miss has scored first in all 9 games this season. The A&M game was the 4th time the Rebels have scored a touchdown within the opening 2 minutes of play. The Rebs are averaging 7.0 plays and 71.3 yards in 1:47 on first-possession scoring drives.
The Rebels are averaging 20.7 seconds per play overall, the 3rd-fastest average in FBS, only behind Indiana (19.4 spp) and Texas Tech (20.5 spp). While Ole Miss ranks top 5 in total rushing yards (2,407), yards per game (267.4), and total attempts (430).
Alabama is allowing 104.0 rush yards per game. The Rebels are second in the SEC and No. 9 nationally converting on third downs 51.2 percent of the time.
I’m frankly shocked that the oddsmakers are giving Ole Miss this many points at the NCAAF odds.
The Tide figure to be flat with their SEC and national title hope gone, plus the Rebs are rested and healthy off the bye. Alabama is 1-4 ATS in its past 5 on the road.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.